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Thread: PLZ help: moving to NY or LA???

  1. #1

    Default PLZ help: moving to NY or LA???

    Hi

    i write from italy, i am 30 yo, single, employee in real estate sector.

    I am going to enter a master program. THe point is that I have been accepted to Columbia, NYU, and University of southern California in Los Angeles.
    You can imagine how nervous and excited i am. I am torn between LA and NYC. The program lasts 1 year. I would even like to stay in US after the master, but i think it is difficult as foreign to get visa ti stay there.

    Nice lifestyle, sunny weather vs the big apple and ivi league.

    Some friends who lived both in NYC and California, and they all tell me to go in LA. NYC is too expensive, you need to be rich, and weather could be terrible. NYC is much mor similar to european cities, while California lifestyle could be much more an experience

    Suggestions???? what you can say about accommodation and lifestyle in NYC?

    i thank you in advance
    ciaociao
    l

  2. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by lorcar
    Nice lifestyle, sunny weather vs the big apple and ivi league.

    Some friends who lived both in NYC and California, and they all tell me to go in LA. NYC is too expensive, you need to be rich, and weather could be terrible. NYC is much mor similar to european cities, while California lifestyle could be much more an experience
    You've got it exactly. Los Angeles will be more different but you might not like it. It's very ugly and you have to go everywhere by car; you'll be stuck in traffic much of the time. You need to include the cost of a decent car in your cost of living. In New York you don't need a car.

    You may conclude that Los Angeles isn't really a city at all by European standards.

  3. #3

    Default

    Columbia's a much better school. Come to NYC.

  4. #4
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    Here is what I think (I have lived in New York for 11 years and have been to Los Angeles many times):

    1) You should choose Columbia U. simply because this is a very prestigious school that everyone knows in the US and abroad. UCLA is a nice school, but it's a state school - it's large, many classes are large, it's not as competitive as Columbia and not as prestigious. Based on that alone, it's better to choose Columbia. Columbia Buisness school is one of the best in the world and you can probably take some courses there while you're persuing your masters. Anywhere you go in your future career, Columbia U. on your resume is going to add you a lot of punch (i.e., ability to find a better job and make more money). I think you should choose a better and more prestigious school because that's what will make a difference for many years to come.

    2) Los Angeles is very expensive too. It may be just a bit cheaper to live in LA compare to the area around Columbia University. And in LA you must have a car which will add quite a bit in terms of expenses (car itself, insurance, gasoline - the most expensive in the US, you need to get california driver license as well).

    3) I personally love Los Angeles as a place to visit. The weather is great all year round - it's warm and nice. There are lots of palm trees, you can always walk on the beach. It's usually sunny - in other words, a great place to relax. But in terms of education and being among "brainy" people, Los Angeles is not the place to be. It does not feel like an intellectual place, it feels like a place where you relax, not work or study. In terms of weather, Los Angeles is much better than New York (it can be quite cold and windy in NY in the winter and very hot and humid in the winter). In terms of cost, considering that you need to have a car LA, it's going to be similar cost of life in NY and LA. New York is an urban city similar to European cities. Los Angeles is very nice, but it's one huge suburb where you need to drive everywhere.
    Last edited by Edward; April 6th, 2006 at 10:12 AM. Reason: No quote neccessary

  5. #5
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    In NYC people are on the street all the time -- there is interaction.

    In LA people are in their cars all the time -- much more isolation, especially for a newcomer.

  6. #6

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    It seems more expensive to own/maintain a car, which is a virtual necessity in LA, than to live in New York. I suppose one can afford a larger living space in LA...but near what? A freeway offramp and a strip lined with In-and-Out Burgers (good as I hear they are...)

    I value my Columbia education and agree that it's more prestigious (in many circles, not necessarily all) than UCLA...but it really depends more on what he chooses to study. There are some great astronomers at Columbia, for example, but UCLA I believe has far better observatories.

    Most of the grad students here don't live in the neighbourhood unless they're being subsidised by the university and/or rich parents. In other cases, they tend to commute by 2/3 express from the cheaper parts of Brooklyn (Red Hook is popular).

  7. #7
    Moderator NYatKNIGHT's Avatar
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    There are a lot more Italians here.

  8. #8

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    Come to NYC, LA is expensive to live in as well and Columbia is a better school. If you ever need to know anything about NYC just ask here in this forum, someone will be able to help you one way or the other.
    Last edited by Edward; April 7th, 2006 at 09:46 AM. Reason: No need for quote

  9. #9

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    i thank you all
    i have almost made my decision, and i'll accept Columbia offer...

    even though in this rainy italian day i wish i were on manhattan beach...

    Mr SPice, i see your point. I also fear that living in Los Angeles and USC (that is like a Club Med) is a little bit too laid back...
    But a friend of mine pointed out that California it's always been an innovative place, whith things going on in every sector and people really not short-sighted.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by lorcar
    even though in this rainy italian day i wish i were on manhattan beach...

    Mr SPice, i see your point. I also fear that living in Los Angeles and USC (that is like a Club Med) is a little bit too laid back...
    But a friend of mine pointed out that California it's always been an innovative place, whith things going on in every sector and people really not short-sighted.
    Perhaps your friend means northern, surely not southern, California. BTW, NYC is very close to some excellent ocean beaches.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by lorcar
    i thank you all
    i have almost made my decision, and i'll accept Columbia offer...

    even though in this rainy italian day i wish i were on manhattan beach...

    Mr SPice, i see your point. I also fear that living in Los Angeles and USC (that is like a Club Med) is a little bit too laid back...
    But a friend of mine pointed out that California it's always been an innovative place, whith things going on in every sector and people really not short-sighted.
    Southern California has some knowledge-based companies in Orange county as well as defense industry in Long Beach. But it's not known as an innovative place. Silicon Valle and Nothern California is known for that. But nowhere in California you have such a concentration of science, business, commerce and human capital as in New York. In any case, Columbia is more prestigious no matter how you look at it. If you were accepted at Stanford or California Institute of Technology, I'd say - go to California and enjoy great weather. But UCLA is a large public school - it's not as good as Columbia U.

  12. #12

    Smile So happy u chose NYC!

    I was about to write a page on NYC vs LA...not to mention Columbia...and you don't have to be "rich" to live here..not all of us live in Penthouses overlooking the park...I am in real estate, not a broker, but I can get u leads on apartments when u r ready...
    Ciao....

    Ps. Check out corcoran.com, elliman.com, nofeerentals.com, etc to get an idea of rental pricing...

  13. #13

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    Both Corocoran and Elliman will give you a VERY high idea of the rental market in NYC. If you're looking for something more affordable, try Craigslist.

  14. #14

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    I wouldn't describe the people renting parkview townhouses as "rich"...more like stratospherically wealthy. I mean, it's about $500k just to buy a tiny 1BR condo on West End Ave. in somewhat still shady Manhattan Valley...that could get you a sprawling mansion in a place like Cleveland.

    I know very few Columbia grad students who manage to live in M. Heights, even anywhere in Manhattan south of 125th, without rich parents or university subsidisation.

  15. #15

    Default at the end

    i accepted Columbia's offer, i applied for housing and crossed my fingers...
    i am quite excited as you may imagine, a bit scared: i resigned from my job, and waiting for documents to apply for Visa (i don't understand why Columbia doesn't do as NYU or other universities, that sent the I20 with the acceptance letter)... I have to move there from Italy and start to be student again. Sometime i wonder if i did the right choice...
    I will arrive in NY mid august... what do u suggest to do first? anything i cant miss?
    thanks a lot in advance

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